The 2019 BRIT Awards took over The O2 in London on Feb. 20 as the best artists and achievements in British and International music were honored. Comedian and presenter Jack Whitehall returned to host the live ceremony and a star-studded list of presenters handed out trophies to the winners.
As for awards, The 1975 notably took home the Mastercard British Album of the Year as well as British Group. George Ezra took home British Male Solo Artist while last year’s Critics Choice Award winner Jorja Smith won British Female Solo Artist. Plus, Calvin Harris snagged his first two BRIT Awards out of 17 career nominations winning Producer of the Year and British Single for his chart-topping collab hit with Dua Lipa, “One Kiss.”
Overall, the night was filled with spectacular live performances and many memorable moments as a new crop of BRIT Award winners were crowned. Though it was truly a tough task to choose our favorites, a list of our picks for the five greatest moments from the 2019 BRIT Awards is listed below.
Yes, we know Ed Sheeran’s third studio album, ÷(Divide), dropped back in 2017. However, winning the Global Success Award for the second consecutive year (in just under two years from its release) shows just how massive the album’s success really is. To date, Divide has sold more than 60 million albums worldwide, amassed a mind-blowing 27 billion streams, and is the biggest-selling album on Earth for the second year running. That’s incredible!
Sheeran, who notably ranked No. 2 on the Forbes Highest Paid Celebrities Under 30 2018 list, won the award three days after his 28th birthday. He's on tour and sent a video message to accept the honor saying, “This really, really means a lot. I’m sorry I can’t be there today. I’m currently in South America on tour. I hope everyone is having a fantastic time …”
Beyoncé and JAY-Z won the BRIT Award for International Group as The Carters. In her short and sweet acceptance speech Queen Bey said, “Thank you so much to the Brit awards for this incredible honor. You guys have always been so supportive. Everything is love. Thank you," to which her hubby JAY-Z jokingly replied, “You’re welcome."
In recreating their music video for “APES—” instead of turning to a portrait of Mona Lisa, they turned to a face painting of the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle, who is wearing a jeweled crown and several necklaces. The BRIT Awards complimented the famous duo with a tweet saying, “Well played @Beyonce & @S_C_” Ditto!
Like many other awards shows this season, female empowerment was in full force at the 2019 BRIT Awards. Matt Healy from The 1975 took a stand against male misogyny in the band’s British Group acceptance speech, Jorja Smith dedicated her award to little girls and women “who are just being themselves,” and Jess Glynne and H.E.R. teamed up to deliver one of the most powerful examples of female self-love as they performed Glynne’s chart-topping hit “Thursday.”
In the captivating, inspirational performance, Glynne and a large group of women removed their makeup during the song in which the London native songstress confidently declared “I won’t wear makeup on Thursdays.” By the end of the song, the ladies were all makeup free and beaming smiles to thunderous applause.
Calvin Harris had a massive run of hits in 2018 and he performed them all in one sizzling tropical-themed BRIT Awards performance. Rag’n’Bone Man kicked things off with a stirring, soulful delivery of “Giant” with Harris at the DJ booth. Smith hit the stage next, dancing and singing his way through “Promises” with supermodel Winnie Harlow. Then, Dua Lipa closed out the medley with a sultry performance of “One Kiss” in which she was flanked by a team of sunglasses-bearing dancers. Hands down, the fab foursome delivered one of the hottest performances of the night.
P!NK is arguably one of the most electrifying performers on the current music landscape. She capped off the prestigious honor of receiving the Outstanding Contribution to Music Award by delivering an explosive live medley of some of her biggest hits.
She began by singing her newest single, “Walk Me Home” wearing a bathroom backstage. She made her way down the hall and boarded a swing, trading her robe for a red feather jacket. She floated down from the ceiling to a flame-lit stage for “Just Like Fire.” Next, she was joined by Dan Smith from Bastille for a beautiful rendition of “Just Give Me a Reason” and then she danced with a lone dancer in pouring rain and against other stunning visual effects for “Try.”
Finally, P!NK took a bold stand for social justice and equality while wearing a newsprint-covered coat and being joined by a huge band of dancers for her empowering anthem “What About Us?” The entire number was breathtaking from beginning to end and earned our pick for the No. 1 greatest moment of the 2019 BRIT Awards. Watch P!NK's epic closing BRIT Awards performance below.